More questions about the Phurnacite but nothing about the impending gridlock in Mountain Ash when the development is given the green light why?
A question to the Chancellor by MP for Cynon Valley the MP was asking what funding will be made available to the environmental sector in Wales to help clear up currently unusable land, as the former Phurnacite plant in Abercwmboi in my constituency, why is there an election due?
So the MP is aware the land on which the former Phurnacite plant operated since 1942 is still currently unusable land she doesn’t go as far as to say it remains contaminated. But who knows what remains underground a report published on the Internet clearly states there are still contaminants in the ground, that’s without some of the UK's most invasive plants such as Japanese knotweed, Himalayan balsam both of which have been widespread in the area for over 50 years to my own recollection.
From correspondences received from the council and other government bodies the responsibility of making sure the land is safe and free from contamination rests with exclusively the developer.
Below taken from VHE Construction website
Customer: Welsh Assembly Government Welsh Development Agency
Value: £12.4 million
The 12-hectare former Phurnacite Works in Abercwmboi was formerly used for the manufacture of smokeless fuel briquettes. When the plant closed it left contamination in the form of tar pits, low-grade coal and ‘hot-spots’ consisting of a mixture of chemicals. It was close to housing and was traversed by a railway line and a river.
VHE excavated more than 123,000 tonnes of hazardous tarry soils with PAH concentrations of up to 40,000mg/kg. The waste tar depositories were chemically validated and re-engineered with 50,000m³ of site won materials, following which stock-proof fencing was installed and the soils were cultivated and seeded.
Extensive environmental controls were necessitated by the nature of the contaminants as well as timing restrictions on HGVs leaving the site. An on-site weighbridge was installed and at peak production, excavation and disposal off-site was approximately 14,000 tonnes per week. The remedial works were successfully and safely completed 20 weeks ahead of programme and within budget. (16 July deadline under the EU Landfill Directive - after which landfill disposal of the tarry wastes will be illegal)
The council intends allowing the construction of 500 houses and a new school on the former Phurnacite land that’s what has been the labour view around numerous election times with labour candidates giving the proposed project their full support. The labour controlled council wants more housing developments they want more council tax that’s ok if they put in the highway infrastructure to cope with the extra vehicles a 500 housing development will bring to the already overcrowded highway system.
The traffic bottleneck in lower Cynon Valley is Mountain Ash and the Abercynon Roundabout onto the A470. After many years the councils Mountain Ash Sothern Cross Valley Link is in construction, the junction on to this new link on the A4059 already has proved controversial in it design with many residents using the road daily commuting to and from work, time will tell if this design proves to be unsafe.
Going back to the 500 houses proposed in Abercwmboi and the intention of the council in a report that the exit and entrance to the proposed site will be at the bottom of Bronallt Terrace Abercwmboi. So can we expect to see in excess of over 800 vehicles heading down towards Mountain Ash on the B4275 without any major highway improvements from the council?
Why do I say there will be no highway improvements perhaps this response on social media from Andrew Morgan labour leader of the council on the 28 October 2016 said, “No need for the northern bridge and data supports that. I’m sure you don’t want £10 M wasted???!!!”
The leader of the council was talking about the Mountain Ash Northern Link Bridge a project that was planned years ago when Mid Glamorgan County Council were responsible for our major highways like the A4059. So what’s changed in 40 years so we have fewer vehicles on the road now? Preparations for the Mountain Ash Northern Link Bridge had started with the demolition of building at the top end of the town but that’s as far as it got with the reconfiguration of local government from a county council and a local council we now have just one local authority and a talking shop in Cardiff Bay where the majority of our money is spent. The labour leader said, ‘I’m sure you don’t want £10 M wasted” he right I just want a bridge built and is he saying it is going to cost just £10 M?
Considering the Labour-controlled assembly sold land in Lisvane, the land was sold as agricultural land value of £1.835m when its potential open market value for residential housing is at least £39 million”. Now is that not labour wasting ££££millions or is it? Let us not forget the LG site in Newport that cost us another £60 M££££ do not forget Valleywood, Pinewood it just goes on, just some of the mismanagement that 20 odd years of labour controlled Assembly government.